The Brewers broke out in the second of three games between them and the Phillies this weekend. The Phils are now 6-9 (nice) going into tonight’s matchup where Aaron Nola will try to lift the Phillies to a series win, with the teams now tied 1-1.
What happened in game two?
Hunter Renfroe…that’s what happened. Three hits and a home run sent the Brewers careering over the Phils yesterday, negating the 3-0 lead the Phils initially built up on the back of Harper and Castellanos. It was yet another game where the offense dried up.
As far as Wheeler goes, he does look like a different pitcher to the man who once made the fanbase look forward to Wheelsday. An endless slew of singles pushed the Brewers back into contention and there wasn’t anything the bats could do to stop the bleeding.
The Phillies need to find a balance. The pitching can’t hold the fort every day, and the offense can’t be expected to put up 8 runs per game…although in theory, they kinda should based on the star-power? But that’s a different debate for a different day.
Aaron Nola (1-2, 5.52 ERA) vs Eric Lauer (1-0, 3.48 ERA)
Aaron Nola takes to the mound tonight against a Brewers side who have 11 homers in 15 games. They’ve scored a combined 9 runs against the Phillies through 2 games, but only have 44 through the other 13. If there is ever a pitcher who can take advantage of a streaky batting order, it’s Aaron Nola, and he needs this kind of game after a sluggish start by his All-star standards.
Our Phillies writer, Matt Watson, had this to say about the under-the-radar pitcher opposing Nola:
Eric Lauer is another Adrian Houser in the sense that nobody knows who he is but his pitching ability is fantastic. Lauer is a command dominant pitcher and isn’t going to blow away hitters with his stuff. Good placement and pitch mix keep hitters off balance and keeps Lauer in games. Phillies fans can compare him to Jamie Moyer and how Moyer was a true pitcher with his command and pitch selection. Lefties might struggle against him in this game but patience at the plate and waiting for your pitch will be key in the Phillies running up the score on the Brewer’s fifth starter.
The Phillies are favored once again tonight at -149, while the run total sits at around 8 depending on the book you use. We’re 1-0 at betting this series so far after missing last night, but the under looks appealing here. Nola should have enough in the tank to hold a lackluster offense to 4 runs or less, despite giving up numerous in each of his starts thus far, and the Phillies offense, while explosive, is still struggling to get it all together and put the cherry on the cake. The Phils are getting on base enough, but getting them home isn’t as easy as it seems on a game-by-game basis.
Betting Pick: Under 8 runs
Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire